Short Summary of “Heroism” by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Life is a sweet gift given by God. God has given everyone some unique skills and abilities. Still some people look at the drawbacks of life and get bogged down by small difficulties that come in their way. They compare their abilities and their blessings with others whom they think are more privileged. “Heroism” is a poem that explains the life of celebrities and heroes who are always considered as blessed by this populace. Ralph Waldo has added extra colors with the base of truth in this poem. He has explained the beliefs of people very clearly.

Celebrity and hero or heroines are words that have very different meaning. People we refer to as celebrities are not true heroes in being. The personalities they carry do not qualify them as heroes.

A hero is prepared by myths; consecrated texts along with history books, there are lots of efforts behind. Being a hero is not that easy. But the celebrity is an individual of rumor, scandals, of magazines, Medias, and the transient descriptions of movie along with TV display. Both personalities are very different. To be a hero one has to take lot of efforts and pain while being a celebrity is just an easy way to be popular which may be by doing anything that doesn’t demand any great skills except fakeness and presentation? Both of these personalities have fame and limelight competition.


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“Heroism” directly attacks on the differences between a hero and a celebrity. Celebrities are always considered as a gossip and heroes are considered as ideal personalities whom people would like to follow. Poet speaks equally on both of these personalities. Poet has not discriminated the two but given their due to both kinds of personalities. He has only revealed the way both these personalities live and behave in real life. Everything that the poet conveys is factual and true.

Poet is very much centered in this poem. He actually knows what he is speaking about. Unlike other poems, this poem truly fulfills the needs and requirements of its readers. Every reader thinks deeply on the topics and thoughts covered in this poem. There is a huge scope to speak something spicy in this poem which can make it more popular but still poet remains faithful with his thoughts and opinions. It’s a true victory of this poem. Poet has succeeded in explaining his point of view.

In short to become a hero or celebrity seems simple to those who take an outer view, but in reality it is not that easy. Poet has explained the life of both these personalities. Very few readers will wish to become one of these personalities after reading this poem. This poem speaks the truth. Every word in the poem is meaningful and has a fact that revealed for the reader.